krcorlet's Blog

Baked Tilapia

Happy Fat Tuesday! While my recipe is a little on the lean side, keep it in your arsenal for tomorrow (Ash Wednesday) and your upcoming Friday Fish Fries. 

4 tilapia filets, frozen
1/4 cup chopped onion
3 Tablespoons lemon juice
3 Tablespoons butter, melted

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Lay out your tilapia in a baking dish or on a foil-covered cookie tray and sprinkle with freshly chopped onion. Stir your lemon juice and butter together in a small dish, then pour evenly over your fish. (The Type A perfectionist in me strives to cover every square inch of fish.) Salt and pepper to taste.

Stick the fish in the oven for 30 minutes at the initial temperature, and then kick it up to broil for 10 to 15 minutes. That last stretch will make the fish a little bit crispier if you leave it in long enough. At this point, keep checking your oven to make sure that it isn't too wimpy or to crispy for your liking. It serves four, or reheats nicely for you to eat later in the week.


Photo Credit to

Learning How to Cook with xkcd

We all have those moments when the fridge fails us and we run out of materials to cook. Well right now, my pantry holds boxes of pasta, some honey, some rice, and several spices. None of the good stuff: no yogurt, no fruit, no potatoes, no green vegetables. Tis the curse of not owning a car on campus. So in this time of midterms, my debit card has racked up quite a history at the Subway on Marshall Street (yes, even a foodie needs to enjoy a cheap sandwich every now and then). Rather than posting an image of my staple lunch (turkey and Swiss toasted on nine-grain wheat), I thought I'd share a little humor and keep you in suspense until next Tuesday when I'll post my recipe for baked tilapia. Thank my housemate, Katrina, for helping me get to Wegmans tonight to pick up the ingredients for next week's creation.

Learning to Cook

Credit goes to the genius at

Butter Bean Soup

Butter beans look a lot like navy beans, but (in my humble opinion) taste loads better.

This week, I was without many fresh vegetables--except for a bag of carrots that had sat in my fridge for at least two weeks. Therefore, I resolved to use four cans of vegetables that had been sitting in my pantry since I stocked up for Snowpocalypse 2011 in this week's soup. Yum. (A spin-off of a recipe I found on the back of Bush's can of butter beans.


1 1/2 cups celery, finely chopped

1 cup carrots, finely chopped

3 tablespoons vegetable oil

3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

4 cups water

2 cans (16 ounces) Bush's Best Butter Beans, drained

1 can (14 ounces) diced tomatoes

Salt and pepper to taste



First, cook your celery, carrots, and onion in oil until soft. (If you're cooking on your gas stove that doesn't drop much below high heat, this will take roughly six minutes.)

Add flour and cook for one minute. Then, gradually pour in the water and stir until smooth.

Add your remaining ingredients and bring the pot's contents to a boil.
Now, reduce your heat and let the soup simmer for 20 to 25 minutes.

Butter Bean Soup

If you're feeling brave (and healthy) add kale to the pot while the soup simmers... If I hadn't been short a trip to the grocery store or farmers' market, you can bet you'd see green blobs floating around in my bowl. Best part about the recipe: it makes enough for about five big bowls, meaning no cooking lunch for a week.

What we're reading: February 18

A round-up of food-related articles and recipes we're digging into today.

What we're reading:
For Actresses, is a Big Appetite Part of the Show?
(The New York Times) Don't be fooled by the twigs in your favorite GQ or Marie Claire articles-- the skinny celebrities who dine on "big girl" meals, entrees twice the size of their stomachs. It's all a hoax. It just has to be. Right?

Gluten-free Gaining Fans in Stores and Restaurants
(Columbian Missourian) A restaurant in Columbia, Missouri, adopted a  gluten-free menu about four months ago to cater to its loyal customers-- an Italian restaurant, no less, where carbs and gluten are a given. By 2015, gluten-free will rake in $5 million; soon it will be as common on a label as "fat free."

What we're craving:
White and Dark Hearted Brownies
Smitten Kitchen tempts us with another batch of photos and ideas to make your brownies less standard the next time you bake.

Especially the Oatmeal
I usually eat my hot cereal in the mornings, but this just in from The Kitchen Sink Recipes will make an excellent switch from my normal Maple Brown Sugar instant oatmeal.
Oatmeal + vanilla + cinnamon + maple syrup + brown sugar + dried cherries + toasted nuts = yum.

“Homemade” Cheesy Mashed Potatoes

How to turn two potatoes into a side dish that feeds nine people (a Valentine’s weekend miracle)

Problem: I needed to make a side dish for a Valentine’s weekend potluck dinner with the girls… with no ingredients in the house to cook. (My lack of car on campus makes it a hell of a challenge to cook anything remotely fresh and delicious unless I plan at least two weeks in advance.)
So, you might ask, what exactly did you have in the house? And in such case I would respond: two potatoes, butter, four cups of Parmesan cheese, a half of a sack of apples, a tub of plain yogurt, and some milk. Not too appetizing of a dish, right there…
Solution: After a quick run to CVS with Mary (the chef genius), I remedied the situation. I scanned the South Crouse Avenue store’s short aisle of food and found a store-brand box of instant mashed potatoes. With the right touch and mix of ingredients, I could make these potatoes a little classier than your typical side from a cardboard box.



2 potatoes
1 box instant mashed potatoes
2/3 cup butter
3¼ cups 2% milk
1½ cups Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons basil seasoning
1½ tablespoons garlic powder

First, wash and cube your two potatoes. (If you prefer, you can peel the skins off at this time, but I like the skins in my potatoes.) Then stick them into a pot, fill with water until the potatoes are covered, and boil. Leave boiling on the stove for 15-20 minutes.
Spoon the potato chunks out of the pot and into a smaller mixing bowl. Here, it’s ideal to use a potato masher to break apart and soften the chunks of potato. I, however, used the backside of an ice cream scoop to cream my potatoes.


Make the full box of instant mashed potatoes. (Mine specified it served 20 people.) To do so, bring 3½ cups of water plus your butter and a dash of salt to a boil. Pour in the potato mix and stir to coat all of the flakes.
Toss your real potatoes on top and keep stirring. Add Parmesan cheese to taste (I achieved a light flavor with 1½ cups), and mix in 2 tablespoons of basil seasoning so that the potatoes are speckled evenly. Add garlic powder and salt to your liking.

Mashed potatoes

What we're reading: February 11

A round-up of food-related articles and recipes we're digging into today

What we're reading
Married to a Chef
(Washington Post) Love stories in the restaurant world... and how these chef geniuses keep their relationships "hot." Surprisingly, only one proposal in the handful of couples interviewed took place in a restaurant. (Really?) 

What we're watching
Feed Me Bubbe
My family is adorably supportive of everything I do. So when in a recent conversation I mention, 'Oh yes, so I'm a writer for the new campus food blog...' I get an e-mail within the week from my dad with the link to this video blog: 'Thought you might enjoy it.' While the little old Jewish granny cooking up kosher meals makes me smile, my chuckle comes more from the fact that my non-Jewish father thought of me when he saw a clip of Feed Me Bubbe on TV. What're you trying to say, dad? This'll be me & my blog when I get to be her age?

What we're craving
Recipes for Romance
(New York Times) This slideshow compiles twenty different recipes for Valentine's Day treats that think outside of the box (of chocolates). To set the mood for you and that special someone, all foods pictured include aphrodisiac ingredients: figs, oysters, artichokes, honey, and chocolate.

To describe Russell Stover Private Reserve Secret Lace Heart: "You know the red and black lingerie that B-movie prostitutes always wear in saloons in bad westerns?"
-Salon foodies on the hunt for the best Valentine's Day candy

Corn Casserole

Sweet corn for Valentine's day... almost better than Dinosaur Bar-B-Que cornbread. (That's right. I went there.)

In theme with Mary's bread pudding, corn casserole achieves a texture between that of cooked oatmeal and cornbread. With only ten minutes of prep (save time for baking, though-- a whole hour) it also makes an quick recipe to have under your belt for a group potluck... or to impress your date this Valentine's Day weekend. And fellas, a guy who cooks earns major brownie points.


1 can (15 ounces) corn kernels
1 can (15 ounces) creamed corn
1 box (8.5 ounces) Jiffy cornbread mix
1 stick (1/4 pound) of butter
1 cup sour cream
2 eggs

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Ready? Do you have everything out on your countertop? Good. Now pour all ingredients into a large mixing bowl and mix well. (You shouldn't have any dry cornbread mix left.)

Corn casserole mix

Transfer your newly mixed glop into a baking dish. (I'd recommend lightly coating it with a Pam cooking spray so that it serves easier without sticking to the pan.) Place the dish into the oven and let it bake for an hour. Wait for the top of the cornbread to turn golden before removing it, and test the middle with a fork to make sure it's not to soggy. Rule of thumb: moist is good, but pulling out a forkful of corn soup from the middle of your dish is bad.

 Cornbread in oven

Let stand for 15 minutes and then serve! Makes about 8 servings.

What we're reading: February 4

A round-up of food-related articles and recipes we're digging into today.

What we're reading:

Next Up: Lasagna Cupcakes
(WSJ) After foodies were stumped on what more to do with cupcakes, Matthew Poley is popularizing lasagna in cup form. I'm a traditionalist when I say that I cannot even think of a savory cupcake like the "frozen turkey meatloaf muffins, topped with spinach and mashed potatoes" sold at Trader Joe's, so this just blows my mind.

Cookie Diet isn't as delicious as you think
(LA Times) Now if you give a Snooki a cookie (which sounds a lot like the beginning of a children's book-- but don't worry, it isn't) she'll endorse your latest fad diet... at least that's what happened for Dr. Siegal. Two men accept this cookie challenge and wrote about their hunger pains in the process.


What we're eating:

Edible Stadium
(Serious Eats) Check out the photos for these dedicated football foodies. I've got to say, I'm inspired. More impressive than the Ohio State stadium made out of Legos. Next up: Carrier Dome built with a cotton candy pillow ceiling.


"For professional reasons I ate a shit-ton of Valentine's candy. But not like we ordered from La Maison Chocolat. No, we went to Duane Reade. And it was disgusting. It's definitely not what you should get someone when you want to have sex with them."
--Francis Lam, Salon Food Writer on what he ate this week (New York magazine's Grub Street)

Spinach Lasagna

If you aren't sick of leafy greens after our lineup of spinach-heavy entrees this past week, this spinach lasagna makes for an easy yet delicious dinner to last in your fridge for a week or share with housemates.


16 ounce tub of cottage cheese
2 eggs
3 cups mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
10 ounces spinach (roughly one large bag)
1 jar tomato sauce (or more, if you're like me and you like your pasta and pizza extra saucy)
9 flat lasagna noodles (Hodgeson Mill makes a delicious variety of whole grain noodles)


1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
2. Mix the cottage cheese, eggs, 2 cups of mozzarella cheese, and 1/4 cup of Parmesan cheese in a large bowl. Then add your spinach. Mix well so that the leafy greens are coated.
3. Layer the bottom of your baking dish with a cup of tomato sauce, three flat noodles, and the cheese mix. Continue to layer until you place your last few noodles on top.
4. Spread remaining cheese (mozzarella + Parmesan) over the top noodles.
5. Bake in the oven for about 40 minutes, or until you see your cheese turn golden brown.
6. When done, pull out the lasagna and let it stand 10 minutes to cool and set before you dig in.

What we're reading: January 26

A round-up of food-related articles and recipes we're digging into today.

What we're reading:

Chk Plz: Restaurants Try Texting to Speed Service
(NPR) On your next blind date, you might not have the assurance of a waiter to break the awkward silence now that has reduced your communication with servers to only needing a text. Does this mean we leave smaller tips for less service? And what happens for all the Sally Albrights in the world who would like make placing orders into a large production? "But I'd like the pie heated and I don't want the ice cream on top, I want it on the side, and I'd like strawberry instead of vanilla if you have it, if not then no ice cream just whipped cream but only if it's real; if it's out of the can then nothing." (When Harry Met Sally, 1989) I'm not convinced.

Confessions of an Ex-Vitaminwater Employee
(Salon) Last week, British Advertising Standards Authority banned a Vitaminwater commercial for calling the drink "delicious and nutritious" when it contains as much sugar as a soft drink. This former employee dishes out on how to evade nutritional interrogation.

Steve Jobs One of the 50 Most Powerful People in Food?
(Chicago Sun Times) Co-founder and CEO of Apple ranked at [drum roll please] #5 on TheDailyMeal's list of influential people--chefs, celebrities, and the sorts-- a whole 32 spots in front of Martha Stewart, party-planning extraordinaire. Thanks to his technology, diners can download food-related apps to sort everything from grocery shopping lists to wine pairings.

What We're Coveting:

Valentine's Gifts for Foodies
(Family Circle) Dark chocolate tastes heavenly, but when you finish the box, all you have left is a pile of wrappers (and perhaps a guilty conscience). Give the gift that keeps on giving this Valentine's Day: a heart-shaped waffle maker. Bed and breakfast never tasted so good.

What We're Cooking:

Recipes for Pancakes, Sweet and Savory
(The New York Times) If you flip through these pictures and decide that you aren't craving flapjacks, God bless you. But I'm very excited to create my scrumptious whole grain pancakes... particularly cardamom-scented oatmeal pancakes with apricots and almonds.